Continental is upping the ante for OnePass members flying on Northwest metal. Beginning March 1, 2005, a number of awards are increasing. Of particular interest to North American members: Awards to Asia in business class jump from 90,000 to 120,000 miles for Standard awards, while EasyPass awards in the same class jump from 180,000 to 240,000 miles. Awards to Europe in business class increase from 80,000 to 100,000 (Standard) and 160,000 to 200,000 (EasyPass). Awards to the Indian Subcontinent, Africa and the Middle East jump from 140,00 to 180,000 for economy-class EasyPass, and from 200,000 to 240,000 for business-class EasyPass. Full details of the changes are available at www.onepass.com.
Members of the American Express Membership Rewards program will no longer be permitted to transfer points into their Marriott Rewards accounts beginning Jan. 1.
Hyatt has become the newest member of the Rewards Network Hotels program. Members now have an additional choice of 106 U.S. properties, and can earn up to seven airline miles for every dollar spent on the room rate. Rewards Network has also expanded its Hotel Rewards program into Canada, adding a choice of more than 600 hotels and resorts in the Great White North.
Continental Airlines received the highest overall score of all airlines surveyed in the 2004 Business Travel News Annual Airlines Survey. The airline garnered top marks in five of the 10 categories, including corporate pricing, meeting pricing, contract performance, quality of airline communication and value of sales representative visits.
Aer Lingus has decided to stay in the oneworld airline alliance after all, despite chief executive Willie Walsh’s suggestion that the Irish airline would leave because of incompatibility with its new role as a low-cost carrier.
Readers of Travel Savvy and Executive Travel magazines have given top honors to Marriott Hotels & Resorts and Marriott Rewards, according to recent issues. Marriott Hotels & Resorts was named by readers of Travel Savvy as the best domestic hotel chain, and Marriott Rewards as the best hotel rewards program. Readers of Executive Travel gave Marriott Hotels & Resorts top honors in best hotel chain, best customer service, and best hotel chain for meetings. Marriott Rewards was selected as the best frequent guest program.
Midwest Miles has been busy on the partnership scene. Teleflora’s Flower Club replaces ProFlowers as the program’s floral services partner; the program has bid adieu to Sprint (existing customers will continue to earn Midwest Miles for Sprint services through April 30, 2005); and the partnership with Air Jamaica will end on Dec. 31.
US Airways and bmi have expanded their Star Alliance relationship, with codeshare flights to destinations in the U.K. US Airways’ code will be added on bmi flights between Manchester and both Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Customers flying from the eastern U.S. to Tahiti may benefit from a new agreement recently signed by Delta Air Lines and Air Tahiti Nui. The two carriers have entered into a memorandum of understanding to form a partnership sometime in 2005.